The Italian gallery owner and cultural promoter, Eriberto Bettini, the creator of this initiative, pointed out that this tribute to the important Cuban artist, whose work is inspired by the Yoruba-Lucumí culture, rooted in Africa,”generates a very special feeling” when exhibited in a deeply Catholic environment such as the Vasari Room of the palace.
“A promise I made to the maestro (…) to bring his work to Rome and present it in this room of the Palazzo della Cancellería is fulfilled. It is a really strong union. The harmony of two worlds”, stated Bettini.
The event was chaired by the head of the Cuban diplomatic mission to the Holy Site, René Mujica, who highlighted the relevance of this initiative, and thanked the presence of Latin American ambassadors to the Vatican and other officials from those embassies.
Mujica recognized the sponsorship provided by the Holy Site’s Department for Culture and Education, which allowed the exhibition of Mendive’s work, whom he classified as one of the most genuine representatives of Cuban culture, in what is the ninth time works by relevant Cuban artists which have been exhibited in those halls.
UNESCO awarded Mendive with the Medal of the Five Continents in 2009 . Previously the artist was awarded by Cuba in 2001, with the National Prize for Plastic Arts, among other recognitions.